Work is underway to construct a new, longer Platform 4 at Swansea station, following a month of demolition work to remove and recycle the old one.
Once completed, the new Platform 4 will be 260 metres long, 13 metres longer than the original, and with take the full length of GWR’s new Intercity Express Trains.
To make way for the new structure, contractor Alun Griffiths has removed 2,400 tonnes of demolition waste from the site, including:
- 22 concrete slabs that formed the surface of the platform;
- 23 beams that supported the concrete platform slabs;
- 23 columns that supported the beams;
- The 150-metre-long parapet wall that ran down the back of the platform.
The demolition waste was separated on site, with steel being taken to recycling centres in Swansea and Bridgend, while concrete was taken to the Alun Griffiths recycling centre in Llanelli.
The first phase of construction is nearly complete, with 71 concrete piles being put into the ground to form the foundations of the new platform. Specialist contractor Bentonite (Manufacturing and Supply) was brought in to pour lightweight foam concrete as part of the new platform construction.
Work has also started on the rebuilding of the two walls that run underneath the platform. Then using 42 tonnes of steel, a new frame will be put in place, which will support 179 concrete slabs to form the new platform surface. Finally, two waiting shelters, lighting and PA system will be installed.
Kevin Collins, Network Rail project director for Wales, said: “This new platform is a key part of the plans to modernise Swansea station, as it will be able to accommodate longer trains, with increased capacity and better facilities for passengers.
“I would like to thank the local community for their understanding during this period of disruption and look forward to it opening in May.”
For safety reasons, some of the key bits of work need to be carried out at night and during weekends when the trains aren’t operating through the station. The work is scheduled to be completed in May.
Swansea is one of the first stations to undergo work as part of the Transport for Wales (TfW) improvement programme. Through its ‘Station Improvement Vision’, TfW are working to upgrade customer facilities, including improved ticket-buying facilities, refurbished space for use by local businesses and community groups, plus giving the station a new look.
Hinatea Fonteneau, head of station projects at Transport for Wales, explained: “Improving stations and its services is a joint effort between all stakeholders involved and I’m delighted to see how these united forces come to visible fruition through close collaboration between Network Rail and Transport for Wales.
“The continuous communication between us all enable a safe management of our works, for an enhanced offer to our customers and communities.”